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  • Il Sor Carlo l'Armonico (The Musical Master Charley)
    Rome (Lazio)

    Il Sor Carlo che vien dall'Olanda
    Per la strada trova la banda,
    Egli è amante degli suoni,
    Quando son strumenti buoni:
    Zu na na na, zu na na na!
    Ecco la banda che passa di qua.

    A quel suono dolce e grato
    Il Sor Carlo appresso è andato;
    Quando al Popolo è alla porta
    Il Sor Carlo si conforta:
    Mira di qua, mira di là,
    Che bella piazza, che rarità!

    Quando fu al Palazzo Fiani,
    Liticavano tre cani;
    Per fuggire il Sor Carlo in fretta
    Inciampò a una chiavichetta,
    Grida soccorso... ohimè pietà!
    I cani in terra lo fecero andà.

    Master Charley of Holland was straying,
    On the street a band was a-playing;
    Now he loves good music dearly,
    When the tune goes loud and clearly:
    Dzoo na na na! dzoo na na na!
    Here is the band as it passes, hurrah!

    While so sweetly the harmonies twined them,
    Master Charley followed behind them;
    Now the People's Gate he reaches,
    And he takes a reef in his breeches:
    See him look here! see him look there!
    O, what a beautiful, beautiful square!

    Soon the Palace of Fiani he's sighting,
    And he meets three doggies a-fighting,
    And he runs in such a flutter
    That he stumbles in the gutter,
    Crying for help! Oh, his fine togs!
    Into the gutter he's thrown by the dogs!

    Sor is the Roman for Signor (Mister). The idea of this Sor Carlo following the band and getting into trouble by being tripped by fighting dogs is very comical. Evidently the music of the song was inspired by some well-known march.

    Return to Folk Songs Page

    Additional Resources
    Famous Italians Folk Dances Folktales
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    Marzo, Eduardo. Songs of Italy; sixty-five Tuscan, Florentine, Lombardian and other Italian folk- and popular songs. New York: G. Schirmer, 1904. 82


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